It has been too long since I’ve been in a throng of people having a good time. Not that I’m a partier or one who gets out a lot in the first place, but after three years of pandemic life, hibernating in front of my computer writing, and this year, being restricted by an unusually harsh and long winter, I realized that even infrequent participation in society is better than none, and it’s good for the soul.
So, my friend had tickets to Elle King and needed a buddy to brave the snowy mountain highway with her to Lake Tahoe, which is thirty minutes from our neighborhood, and another ten to South Lake.
I like Ms. King’s songs. I hoped for a good show. She was okay. Seemed like she’d been partying a bit hard before coming on stage. She was quite sassy and tossing out the f-bombs liberally while toking on a joint. A little of that goes a long way. What can I say? As a writer I cringe at demonstrations of limited vocabularies. We also waited a long time for her to start after her amazing opening band concluded. And she left abruptly with no encore. But that’s okay. I still had a great night out.
We enjoyed a fabulous dinner and service at the Sapori Italian Kitchen at the top of Harrah’s with an amazing view of the famous emerald lake surrounded by snow and clouds any artist would dream to paint. I loved the opportunity to indulge in good company, lots of conversation, and people watching. Even the room at the Quality Inn was cozy and the perfect place to crash before heading home the next morning.
But there are a few other highlights that made this outing special. I have an entire scene in book one of my series, The Starlight Chronicles, where Andras takes Selena for an evening out at Harvey’s. It’s a pivotal point in the plot, Andras’s big reveal, and precipitates a critical action scene. It was good to see that my impressions from previous experiences were spot on, and I felt like I was walking around in my book. The people-watching was a much-needed opportunity for character ideas. What a blast! Getting outside my head for stories is kind of amazing.
The Red Clay Strays
The second highlight was the opening band, the Red Clay Strays. I’d never heard of them and I always love an opportunity to be introduced to new music. If you haven’t listened to them or seen them live, I recommend both. If you like Country mixed with Rock, the energy of Jerry Lee Lewis mixed with a Chris Stapleton-like voice, you’ll dig this band.
Visiting an old favorite by Dean Koontz. Twilight Eyes. Anyone else been a fan since the 80s? This is a signed illustrated edition I got for my hubby years ago. Nothing better than a horror story in a carnie setting. Might have to try my hand at it one day…
My all time favorite Koontz is Watchers. What’s yours?
Since I’ve been reading, watching and writing stories in the fantasy genre, I’ve enjoyed a common theme. No politics. Sure, there are good versus evil forces trying to whack each other into oblivion. Even The Umbrella Acadamy now has the Sparrow Acadamy to battle for their place in the world, as if going back in time and saving it wasn’t enough. But there’s an honesty to good versus evil in our entertainment that our current real world lacks, like the stout-hearted Hobbit facing the fiery maw of Mount Doom in the land Mordor. I kind of hope it won’t take us thousands of years to find our Frodo.
It used to be the other way around.
I used to think politics were reasonable. You had two sides of an issue. Your representatives debated the two sides using logic, conviction and maybe even passion. Granted some issues would be controversial and the debates would get heated, but reason would prevail in the end. You could feel good about living in a world like that, put entertainment and it’s battles in their place, freely enjoying the question of Alien versus Predator because when you inevitably didn’t get a definitive answer and the threat still waited around the corner for the hapless protagonist, you could walk out of the theater, and return to a world that made sense.
Now, it’s the real world where all the lines are blurred beyond recognition. People are walking around in utter confusion about who is bad and who is good, and there’s no one left to shine the light on reason. Lies become truth that’s wielded in the guise of helping the masses, when it’s all designed to further one man’s ambitions. A mere human who has the ridiculous notion he can take it all with him. Where? Is there a spacecraft waiting to transport him and his gold to a planet containing the fountain of youth? Will his minions follow him there, so he has someone to fire every other second? Well, at least they will believe him if he says it’s so.
My pod people don’t care about any of that. They’re too busy fighting battles they can understand even if the enemy is a mystery, because it’s me who gets to orchestrate the fates of my pod people. I can set them on a clear course that, when it’s achieved, will leave the sensible ones standing and the evil ones pounded to dust. Maybe my pod people will find love and friendship along the way, a fellowship of supporters who can pick a clear side and stick by it, confident they’re all in it together and have each others’ backs.
You can find my brand of entertaining chaos on My Books page for a nice escape from the blurry lines of reason.